Child custody and parenting plans present many challenges

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Child custody and parenting plans present many challenges

Going through a divorce and having to make various important decisions naturally creates a stressful time. Along with difficult choices related to property division, parents in Ontario will have to deal with matters involving child custody and drawing up parenting plans. This may be a daunting task because so many issues must be considered and addressed.

Some of the matters to include in drafting a parenting plan include living arrangements, stating the time the child will spend with each parent, at which address the child will reside and how the transport between the homes of the parents will be managed. Special days, vacations and holidays must be planned and stipulated. The plan must also include how decisions related to medical and dental care will be made, along with the parents’ choices about preventative treatments and vaccinations. The parenting plan will require even more attention to detail if there is a special-needs child involved.

All aspects related to education and extra-curricular activities must be added, including access to school records, school events and parent-teacher conferences. The signing of permission forms and who will be allowed to remove the child from school are important details to include. Other various issues, such as religion and cultural education and activities, also need addressing. Matters related to extended family members and grandparents may also be included in the parenting plan to ensure loving relationships can continue after the finalization of the divorce.

This is far from a complete checklist, and every item mentioned above has multiple associated issues to include. Some Ontario parents choose to utilize the skills of seasoned divorce lawyers who can provide support and guidance on all matters related to child custody and drafting parenting plans. A lawyer’s experience may help parents to address even unanticipated events and avoid contention in the future.

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